- Grouping of plants and
animals in a scientific way is called taxonomy. 'Taxis' means
arrangement, while 'nomos' means laws. The
term taxonomy was coined by A.P. Candolle.
- The concept of species was
first described by the English philosopher and naturalist, John Ray. He
suggested that while classifying the plants, all the parts of the plant
should be taken into consideration.
- Morphological concept of
species was given by Linnaeus. Morphologically well-differentiated
species with weak reproductive isolation are morphospecies.
- The modern concept of
species, i.e. the biological concept was given by Ernst Mayr. According to him the species which show
interbreeding and are reproductively isolated from other groups are
called biological species. In this concept, since the word
'interbreeding' is related with biological process, it is called
- The systems of
classification have evolved in a stepwise manner from the earlier times
to the present times. A system of classification can be artificial,
natural or phylogenetic.
- In the artificial system of
classification, only few or one character is selected at random and the
plants are arranged into different groups according to these characters.
Linnaeus system is the best known artificial system.
- In the natural system of
classification, all the important characters are considered and plants
are classified according to their related characters. All the modern systems
of classification are natural system. Bentham
and Hooker's system of classification is the natural system.
- The phylogenetic
system of classification, is based on the
concept of evolution. A German botanist Engler
proposed this system in 1886. Work of an English botanist, Hutchinson on
this system was given in 1926.
- The phylogenetic
system was published in an expanded form in 'Die Naturlichen
Pflanzenfamiliem'. This is composed of 23
volumes and whole range of plant kingdom is covered.
- The principle involved in
the phylogenetic system covers the increasing
complexity of flowers.
- Carlous Linnaeus made the practice
of binomial nomenclature a rule. The system was given in his book
'Species Plantarum' in 1753. Before this,
in 1737, Linnaeus published 'Genera Plantarum'.
Species Plantarum is the basis for plant
classification. Animal classification is given in the 10th edition of 'Systema Naturae'
- International rules of
binomial nomenclature were approved by the International Botanical Congress
in 1905 at Vienna. Accordingly:
Out of the two words genus is written first, followed by
The first letter of genus should start with capital letter.
Both the words should be underlined when written and italicised when printed.
The name of the author who founded that name is given after the
species, usually in an abbreviated form. To quote the author's name is called
- In the binomial system, the
first word is the genus, which is usually a noun, while the second word
is a species which is an adjective.
- Binomial names of some
Mango - Mangifera indica
Rubber - Ficus elastica
Pea - Pisum sativum
Sunflower - Helianthus annus
Wheat - Triticum sativum